Lee’s Summit community turns out for Nooks welcome

More than 50 Lee’s Summit community members, MCC staff and students attended a reception Tuesday evening to welcome MCC-Longview’s new president, Dr. Kirk Nooks.

At the event, hosted by MCC Chancellor Mark James, James told the crowd that he was pleased with the administrators’ decision to hire Nooks and that the decision was not taken lightly, given the recent retirement of long-time MCC-Longview President Fred Grogan.

“I really felt strongly this was the right leader at the right time. He lives the 7 Ps,” James said, referring to a series of listening sessions Nooks has hosted that are designed to examine all aspects of campus operationss and to create a new formula for the future. The 7 Ps are: processes, people, programs, progress, policies, places and practices.

“I didn’t hire you to fit in,” James said, smiling in Nooks’ direction. “I hired you to mold us.”

Evelyn Crosby, a student at MCC-Longview, said she’s impressed by the new leader’s enthusiasm and his willingness to speak with students he encounters on campus.

“That means a great deal to me,” she told the group, who gathered in the Education Center on campus.

Karen Goos, MCC-Longview dean of students, said the past three months under Nooks’ leadership has proven positive.

“I’ve been challenged and re-energized in a way I haven’t been in a very long time,” she said.

During his time at the podium, Nooks spoke highly of the campus’s past and of former leaders, and said the work of preparing students for the future looms ahead.

“We owe it to them (former leaders) to continue this Longview legacy,” he said. “We want to answer the community’s call.”